On October 7, 2000, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) designated Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary as the nation's first national marine sanctuary in the Great Lakes. Following over a decade of support from partners and the local community, the boundaries of Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary were expanded in 2014. Twenty years after designation, Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary continues to protect the rich maritime history of the Great Lakes.

An aerial view of a pool used for dive training

Facilitating Science

Looking for a partner in Great Lakes research? Learn about the sanctuary's resources.

a shipwreck with the stern collapsed

Sanctuary History

A brief history of the sanctuary.

the propeller of a shipwreck

Management Plan

Learn about what a management plan is and how it is used as a tool for planning activities and setting priorities at the sanctuary.

People rowing a boat


Find a listing of individual staff members and partners stationed at the sanctuary facility here.

People paddling cardboard boats as a crowd watches


How to contact the sanctuary offices or the visitor center.